Florida Attorney Used Proceeds Of COVID Loan Scam To Pay Trump Golf Club

Does it get more Florida than this?

Road sign Welcome to FloridaFlorida attorney Derek Acree was sentenced to 41 months in prison for a scheme where he, and at least one co-conspirator, filed fraudulent COVID loan (Economic Injury Disaster loans and Paycheck Protection Program loans) applications for $1.6 million. Of that total, authorities say Acree kept ~$870,000 for his personal use.

The prison sentence imposed by U.S. District Judge Raag Singhal’s is on the low end of the sentencing guidelines. However, he also ordered Acree pay $1.26 million in restitution, as well as $1.6 million in asset forfeiture.

The preliminary forfeiture order also contains a treasure trove of details on what Acree spent his ill-gotten windfall on. As reported by Law.com:

The order shows that Acree made an “$11,000 payment to Trump National Golf Club, monthly payments of child school tuition,” and repairs to his boat. In addition, he made payments to “Salles Jewelers in the amount of $67,900, XO Global in the amount of $54,795 for private jet services, and a $46,000 down payment for a home” in Palm Beach Gardens.

This isn’t Acree’s first brush with law enforcement, In August 2021, he settled Securities and Exchange Commission allegations regarding the unregistered sale of $30 million in securities and for allegedly misleading investors. He agreed to disgorge ~$13 million and paid $125,000 in penalties.

Kathryn Rubino is a Senior Editor at Above the Law, host of The Jabot podcast, and co-host of Thinking Like A Lawyer. AtL tipsters are the best, so please connect with her. Feel free to email her with any tips, questions, or comments and follow her on Twitter @Kathryn1 or Mastodon @Kathryn1@mastodon.social.